Helen Benjamin has been named interim superintendent/president of Santa Barbara City College in California. The college enrolls over 16,000 students. African Americans are 3 percent of the student body.
In 1991, Dr. Benjamin was hired by the Contra Costa Community College District, where she served in a variety of positions for the next 27 years, until her retirement in 2016. The last 11 years of her career were spent serving as chancellor of the Contra Costa Community College District.
Throughout he career, Dr. Benjamin has remained active in many professional and community organizations including as president of the California Community Colleges CEOs, president of the board of the Community College League of California, chair of the California Promise Leadership Team, convener of the Presidents’ Round Table of Community College African American CEOs, and member of the board of directors of the American Association of Community Colleges. Additionally, she was the first community college representative appointed by Congress to the Advisory Committee on Student Financial Assistance.
“I am honored to be selected by the board to serve in an interim capacity as superintendent/president of SBCC. I am inspired by the vision and mission of the college, and look forward to working with the board, employees and the community in fulfilling both,” said Dr. Benjamin.
Dr. Benjamin is a magna cum laude graduate of Bishop College in Texas where she earned two bachelor’s degrees in English and Spanish. She holds a master’s degree and Ph.D. both in English from Texas Woman’s University.